Opinion: Coronation brought unity and togetherness

King Charles III Coronation celebrations at Peterborough Cathedral.King Charles III Coronation celebrations at Peterborough Cathedral.
King Charles III Coronation celebrations at Peterborough Cathedral.
“I come not to be served, but to serve”. This was a poignant moment at the Coronation on Saturday. A continuation of the promise Queen Elizabeth II made so many years ago, writes Peterborough MP Paul Bristow.

​There were many tributes to the memory of Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, arguably our greatest monarch.

While coronations are a celebration, it was important to recognise the significant sacrifice made by Elizabeth II as she served selflessly for 70 years.

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Prince William summed up how we all felt at the Coronation Concert when he said, “I know she's up there, fondly keeping an eye on us. She would be a very proud mother”.

King Charles III became the 40th monarch to be crowned at Westminster Abbey, a history of monarchs stretching back over almost 1,000 years.

Thousands braved the perfectly British weather to catch a glimpse of the procession across London with 4,000 troops and 19 military bands.

Millions tuned in to the coronation and as the eyes of the world once again turned on us, we didn’t disappoint.

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Some question the necessary of such a spectacle and even the royal family as a whole, but I believe it brings unity and togetherness. It was irresistible.

This was the first coronation in 70 years and the UK has changed massively in this period. In fact, the Prime Minister last time was one Winston Churchill.

There was a good balance of tradition whilst at the same time a nod to a more modern, diverse United Kingdom.

But perhaps the best moment of the service came when the King disappeared behind a screen and was anointed with oil during the choir’s rendition of Handel’s Zadok the Priest.

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I like many of you watched much of the coronation weekend at home with my family, it was a day of arts and craft, food, television and great fun.

I even managed to enjoy a small break from politics after the local elections last week that saw Peterborough Conservatives gain 3 seats across the city.

It was great to see Peterborough come together to celebrate with street parties, local events and the screening of the coronation at the Cathedral - which looked magnificent.

This is what our country is all about. The Platinum Jubilee celebrations, the late Queen’s funeral and now the King’s coronation all brought us together in different ways.

There is no reason to think our best days are behind us.

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This weekend proved once more we are a wonderful country with brilliant history and traditions.

The world recognises this, even if some here do not.

We should be proud of who we are, not ashamed.

His Majesty King Charles III waited 74 years for this moment and for most of us it was the first coronation of our lifetimes. I thought it was well worth the wait.

God Save the King.